Mechanical Engineering Students Win Top Prize at AIAA Conference

Contact: Gabrielle Maxey

April 23, 2015 - Three mechanical engineering students from the University of Memphis – William Parker, David Pumroy and Douglas Williams – won first place in the Team Division of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Region II Student Conference held recently in Savannah, Ga. They won for their paper "A Feasibility Experiment of a Small Scale RTV-655 Cryogenic Liquid Container for Space Applications."

"Most people would not associate the University of Memphis with space-related research, so this type of recognition is important because it emphasizes that the University is actively involved in research aimed at advancing space exploration and has high-quality students contributing to this effort," said Dr. Jeffrey Marchetta, associate professor of mechanical engineering and undergraduate adviser.

AIAA is the world's largest professional society devoted to the progress of engineering and science in aviation, space and defense. The AIAA Student Conference is a technical paper competition for student members at the undergraduate and graduate levels from 14 campuses throughout the Southeast, including the University of Tennessee, Vanderbilt University, Georgia Tech, University of Florida and University of Alabama.

Students are invited to submit technical papers and give formal presentations, which are judged on technical content and clarity of communication by professional engineers. The three U of M students were awarded cash prizes and will advance to the AIAA Foundation International Student Conference, which will be held in San Diego next January.